This post is sponsored by the National Pasta Association, although all thoughts and opinions are my own.
This quick and easy Spinach Pesto Chicken Pasta with Linguine dish is a perfect weeknight dinner that only takes 30 minutes to put together for your family. Make the pesto using spinach, basil, garlic, and grated Parmesan cheese.
Pasta dishes get a bad rap these days. CARBS! CARBS! CARBS! We have to limit the number of carbs we consume if we want to lose weight and be healthy. I am exhausted with all of the suggestions and recommendations that often lead to people binging because they are hungry or left feeling unsatisfied because of the restrictions given to be “healthy”. Well, this dish has protein, fiber, healthy fat, and veggies, which is everything the body needs to perform well. Guess what? It’s a pasta dish!
It’s Spinach Pesto Chicken Pasta with Linguine to be exact!
The first time I made pesto I thought I was doing something special! Like really, I couldn’t believe that I was making a sauce that I had often seen on cooking shows made by famous chefs. Not sure why I gave myself such a hard time about it because making pesto s super easy! All you do is add the pesto ingredients to a food processor and it takes care of the rest for you! The great thing about pesto is you can add it to pasta or use it as a sauce over chicken or steak.
What are the ingredients in spinach pesto?
In this Spinach Pesto sauce I used the following ingredients:
Spinach: Typically, pesto is used using mostly basil. I wanted to add some veggies to this dish to increase its nutritional value. However, I have seen some pesto sauced made using kale as well.
Basil: I still added a touch of basil because it does add the element of “pesto” to the dish. If you want all spinach, you definitely can omit this ingredient, but you may not want to :-).
Garlic: Pesto isn’t pesto without garlic. I mean, any Italian cuisine is always filled with garlic. There is no other to make pasta without it.
Pinenuts: When making pesto you absolutely need pine nuts. I can’t give you the historic reason, but I know that you can definitely tell that pesto is missing something if it’s absent of pine nuts.
Parmesan Cheese: This just brings the pesto to fulfillment. You have to have cheese to any pesto because it isn’t complete without it. The Parmesan Cheese makes the sauce and the pasta flavor luscious and irresistible.
In the case of this pesto chicken pasta recipe, I combined the pesto with grilled chicken and chickpea pasta (which tastes just fine) to make a meal as healthy as it can be. You can absolutely use whole wheat, white pasta, or another option if you prefer. In fact, you don’t have to use linguine if you don’t want to. Use whatever you have handy.
Also, feel free to make the pesto ahead and store it in an airtight container, and place it in the refrigerator until you are ready to use.Print